Don’t believe what they say …

It’s a sad fact that, in life, we are going to come across some seriously hurtful people.



Hurtful people


Hurtful people can be hurtful in a variety of different way. Often, hurtful people use cruel words to hurt us.


 Words – even if you delete them off a page – remain in our memories.


For example, I can still remember the hurtful words said to me when I was in primary school by one of the school bullies (and this happened over 25 years ago).


It’s just one of the mysteries and joys of human life – we get hurt and, of course, we hurt others.


Many of our Students at College SA tell me that they experienced people in their lives who were hurtful towards them about their intelligence and about how successful they would (or would not be) later on in life.


My own primary school Principal told me that he didn’t think that I would be very successful in life.


That’s just awful.


There is some good news:

1) Things become easier once you accept that there will always be negative and hurtful people.

2) Things become easier still when you realise that the opinions of those negative people are not based on the truth.

3) Things become even easier when you discover that you can achieve your dreams and be happy, in spite of what those people said to you.


Don't believe the nastiness


What I love about working at College SA is seeing our Students succeed – in spite of what the students may have believed about their supposed lack of intelligence or educational abilities.

With every single student that graduates from College SA, I think to myself:


“Everybody can study. Everybody can improve their knowledge and skills. Everybody can achieve”.


Studying is not just for clever people, or just for the people who did really well in school. If somebody tells you that, they are lying to you.




Studying is for everybody. We are all entitled to become better skilled and better qualified people.


If the only reason why you are not studying now is because somebody told you that you wouldn’t make it, then, it’s time to stop believing what that person told you. They lied to you.


Do not believe what that person said to you.


College SA is a College for all sorts of Students. Our College family welcomes anybody who has a sincere desire to make a difference in their life. 


If you want to start proving to other people, but more importantly, to yourself, that you CAN be successful in your studies, well then, what are you waiting for?


College SA – we are here for YOU.






Something NEW

Hi there Dear Readers,

How are you all doing?

If you are anything like me, then clichés irritate you. Like seriously irritate you. I get nauseous from the saccharine-sweet excessive sentimentality of feel-good clichés. I am smiling to myself right now because I just realised that my mother speaks mainly in clichés, it’s her preferred argot. For example, when I would ask if I could get a toy, she would reply with one of the following:

  • All good things come to those that wait
  • Don’t count your chickens before they hatch
  • Cleanliness is next to Godliness
  • A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush
  • A fool and his money are soon parted
  • A good name is better than riches
  • A stitch in time saves nine
  • A watched pot never boils


Counting Chickens

As you can see, not all of these proverbs (also known as clichés) were entirely relevant to the context. But the point is, I was practically raised on clichés. It is no wonder that by the age of 10 I had quite a collection of proverb-cliches that I could recite to impress my school teachers. But more about that another time …



But back to cliches … I am willing to concede that some clichés actually have some truth to them. And, it’s possible that a cliché is only a cliché because it is over-used (and not because it is factually incorrect).

Today I want to discuss the idea of new beginnings (and yes, for this topic we have an epic range of clichés).

But why am I thinking about new beginnings? Well, today is Friday, and it has been quite a long and challenging week for me. But this morning, something happened, something quite spectacular – my colleague Genevieve came into the office with her 2 week old baby, Garlin.

Here is a picture of Genevieve, with Jan Badenhorst (College SA Principal), and Genevieve’s baby, Garlin:

Gen, Jan and Garlin



A baby is undoubtedly something ‘new’. This particular baby, Garlin, is only two weeks old. So in terms of ‘life’, Garlin is very new.

How do we tend to feel about new things?

  • Terrified,
  • Anxious,
  • Excited,
  • Nervous,
  • Filled with self-doubt

Have you experienced something new lately, or, are you planning on starting something new? How are you feeling about it?

Don't give up







I know that many new College SA students are often anxious about their studies. Some of their concerns are:

  • Will I be able to do this?
  • Will I cope without a teacher?
  • Will I finish my studies in time?
  • How will I get my study material?
  • What will happen if I don’t understand the study material?
  • What will happen if something happens in my life and I need to stop studying?

[By the way, if you are looking for answers to those questions, please CLICK HERE].

It’s quite understandable that starting something new can be a bit or a lot scary. I know. I’ve experienced several new beginnings in the past couple of years. In fact, just yesterday, I was whining to myself that I am sick and tired of unexpected changes in my life (which, by default, will require new beginnings).

I’ve been working at College SA for quite some time now, and one of the (many) things that I can safely state is that all of us at College SA know that studying can be intimidating and a bit scary. We know that our students need lots of reassurance and guidance. And, that’s what College SA is about – supporting our students. I haven’t met a single College SA employee that does not want to truly help our students.

You see, at College SA we don’t sell you a fancy car and then just abandon you without explaining how to actually get into the car and operate the car. Actually, and if I can continue with this analogy, we will sit in the car right next to you and be with you wherever you drive (but in a non-creepy way of course!).

I just want to say to you, Dear Readers, that even though you may be filled with self-doubt and fear regarding your new venture, just know the following:















The disguise of new beginnings












The story of your life


Dear Readers, this is me urging you to:

  • Just keep walking (with or without the Johnny Walker!);
  • Take the first step, then another, and then another;
  • Know that it is okay to be afraid;
  • Know that there is at least one person who wants to, and who is able to help you,
  • Hold your chin up high and know that you have every right to believe that you can be successful;
  • Be proud of yourself; 
  • Realise that life is about new beginnings / challenges / opportunities / ventures; and
  • Do everything in your power to achieve your goals.


Take care of yourself Dear Readers,

Until next time,



PS: Here’s a final thought about cliches for you:

“You’ll get over it…” It’s the clichés that cause the trouble. To lose someone you love is to alter your life for ever. You don’t get over it because ‘it” is the person you loved. The pain stops, there are new people, but the gap never closes. How could it?  …  This hole in my heart is in the shape of you and no-one else can fit it. Why would I want them to?” 
― Jeanette Winterson, Written on the Body



The New Year is Upon Us

Hi there Dear Readers,

Today’s beautiful blog post has been written by a very dear colleague. This woman emanates strength, beauty, radiance and compassion. I am really grateful that she agreed to write a post for our blog. It is an absolute honour to know and to spend time with this truly awesome woman.

Here is her article …

There are so many articles out there that tell you how to change your life and ready yourself for the New Year. Then there are the almost endless inspirational quotes. I find that when I read them, I feel inspired for about an hour or so, and then I fall back into my old routine (you’ll see that I have included two quotes in this article. These are the ones that actually stuck with me). The thing is, I don’t really commit myself to changing or making my life more fulfilled. Nothing reminds me daily of the success I could reach if I just tried a bit harder. I feel the need to do so, but I don’t have the drive to follow through. I think some people just find this easier than most.

I have had some pretty hard times in my life, and this has certainly taken its toll on my confidence. People don’t need to know me well to notice this. Over the years I have slowly but surely worked on getting this confidence that people around me just seem to have. In the process I have noticed that so many people have the same problem, even if it is just momentary.

The thing that does help is to just force yourself to take control. It might not feel very good at first, but in time you get used to it and it becomes easier. It’s almost like programming yourself to think differently. By taking small steps every day, you can become that person you dream of being.

I know it sounds like one of those quotes I was talking about that belongs on a poster, but it’s not. For me it’s a daily struggle, and like anything that you work hard at, it’s worth it. No matter what your goal is, it will feel great to accomplish it. Nothing can replace that feeling for me. It’s a strong emotional response that’s almost equal to love. In this case you love yourself and you make yourself into someone you love even more.

Love the person

I recently started studying. At first this felt strange, since I had not studied in 8 years, but after a while (and some forced motivation) it got easier. I also had great help from my tutors, who keep me going no matter how I feel.

When I wanted to study it felt natural to study through College SA, since I work there, and it has been a pleasure, with their help of course.  I also feel really good whenever I finish an assignment. That great feeling fills me and inspires me to go on and do more.

I want you to take that step. Start with something small. Even if it is to drink more water every day, or something simple like that. Or do something big.  If you have a job and you feel you could be better at it if you tried harder, do it! You can’t lose anything by at least trying.

Do it today.

My message to the woman who wrote this article:

Thank you for your beautiful words. Thank you for gentleness and kindness. Thank you for how you treat those around you. Thank you for your wonderful laughter. Thank you for being YOU.